Monthly Archives: May 2012

Amesbury hangs on to defeat Newburyport, 7-6, in Cape Ann League softball

Newburyport seniors Beth Castantini, Molly Rowe, and Maddy Stanton after playing their last home game.

Cassie Schultz waits for Casey Barlow to arrive

(Newburyport) The Amesbury Indians (15-4) swept the season series with Newburyport on the strength of a 7-6 win at Perkins Playground on a beautiful Wednesday afternoon in Cape Ann League softball.

Newburyport (10-8) gave away five runs in the field during the first two innings but came back with their bats to nearly pull this one out in the bottom of the seventh.

This was the last regular season home game for Newburyport’s three seniors (Beth Castantini, Molly Rowe, and Maddy Stanton) and they were honored by NHS coach Lori Solazzo before the game.

Sophomore Amanda Schell was the hitting star for the Indians collecting four RBI including two in Amesbury’s 2-run sixth.  Those two runs provided the winning margin as the Clippers tallied two runs in the bottom of the seventh to get within one run.

Amanda Schell – two hits and four RBI

In their previous meeting, Amesbury won 9-2 on April 24th.  That time around starter Carolina Merrill tossed a 4-hitter to get the victory.  This time around Newburyport stroked thirteen hits but could never get more than two runs in an inning.

The first inning was not pretty for either team defensively.  I counted five throwing errors by some normally reliable infielders on both teams.  Second baseman Alexis Boswell had a bobble on a potential inning-ending grounder.

When the defensive dust settled Amesbury led, 4-2, after one inning.

The Indians picked up another tainted run in the second.  A two-out, strikeout by Molly Rowe got past catcher Lauren Singer and Janine Fatal raced home with Amesbury’s fifth run.

Newburyport trailed, 5-2, going into the bottom of the fourth but ran themselves out of a promising inning.  A Casey Barlow single to left was followed by Lauren Singer’s single to right sending Casey to third with one out.  Amy Sullivan was put in as a courtesy runner for Lauren.  Amy tried to steal second but Indian catcher Cassie Schultz threw a strike to Amanda Schell to nab Amy.  Casey Barlow broke for home as the play at second was completed and Amanda threw a strike back to Cassie getting Casey by plenty.

The Clippers picked up two runs in the fifth to close to 5-4.  Kendra Dow singled and reached third after two infield outs.  Carley Siemasko brought Kendra home with a single to left.  Later it was Beth Castantini delivering Lea Tomasz with a single up the middle.

Janine Fatal scores an Amesbury run

Amesbury answered with two runs of their own in the sixth.  A walk (Rachel Cyr) and a single (Alexis Boswell) forced a Clipper pitching change as Beth Castantini replaced Molly Rowe.  After Alexis stole second Amanda Schell hit a loud double to left center deep enough to score both runners.

Newburyport made things interesting in their last at-bats.  They got runners (Lea Tomasz and Carley Siemasko) on first and second with two outs.  Senior Beth Castantini drove in Lea and fellow senior Maddy Stanton brought home Carley.  But that’s where the comeback ended as AHS pitcher Carolina Merrill got Vicki Allman to pop out to first baseman McKenzie Cloutier.

Janine Fatal and Amanda Schell each had two hits to pace Amesbury.  Janine and Alexis Boswell both scored two runs.

Carley Siemasko – had three hits and scored two runs

Freshman Carley Siemasko had three hits for the Clippers while Kendra Dow, Lea Tomasz, and Beth Castantini collected two hits.  Beth had two RBI.

Third baseman Maddy Stanton turned a pop fly into a double play in the 4th inning.

Indian pitcher Carolina Merrill had Lea Tomasz’ line drive go off her leg in the 7th inning.

A dog joined the action in the 4th inning even bringing along his own ball.

Amesbury has a 15-4 season going with no seniors.  The Indians close their regular season tomorrow (Thursday) at St. Mary’s.

The Clippers will be involved in the North Andover tournament starting on Friday.

Both Amesbury and Newburyport have qualified for the post-season tournament.  The Clippers will be playing on the road whereas the Indians may get a home game or two.

I can report now that this game was not at Cashman or Bresnahan?  Only an individual who had gone to both places could give you that sort of information.

(All of the pictures above and below enlarge if you click on them.)

NHS coaches Mark Rowe and Lori Solazzo

Amanda Schell jumps for second as Kendra Dow reaches for the throw

ready to play

Pitcher Molly Rowe fires to first as Maddy Stanton and AHS coach Chris Perry watch

Lea Tomasz beats the tag of AHS catcher Cassie Schultz

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Big inning gets Georgetown by Amesbury 9-3 in Cape Ann League baseball

CJ Ingraham scores on a wild pitch in the seven-run third inning.

Jeff Moore – struck out six and allowed two hits in six innings of pitching

(Georgetown)  Georgetown (7-10) combined four hits and four walks with three Amesbury (3-14) miscues in the third inning to get seven runs and defeat the Indians, 9-3, on a very pleasant Saturday afternoon for Cape Ann League baseball.

The game was originally scheduled for 10AM but with the Georgetown junior/senior prom the night before, the game was rescheduled for 2PM.

Junior Jeff Moore dominated Amesbury over six shutout innings allowing just two hits (Shawn Bannon & Ben Cullen).  Jeff also had six strikeouts and limited the Indians to just four base runners.

The game didn’t get out of hand until the bottom of the third.  The Royals only had a 1-0 lead at that time.

The bottom of the third, however, was a seven-run disaster for Amesbury.  AHS starter Nick Hawrylciw walked the bases loaded with one out.  Indian coach Gene Burnham lifted Nick for shortstop Ben Cullen.  Nick took Ben’s place at short.

AHS starter Nick Hawrylciw ran into trouble in the third

That switch didn’t work out so well for either player.  Ben had a wild pitch, gave up two walks and two hits while Nick had two errors at short.

As luck would have it, after seven runs had crossed for Georgetown, Coach Burnham switched Ben and Nick back to their original positions and sure enough Nick’s first pitch produced a grounder to Ben that he handled cleanly to end the inning.

GHS coach Justin Spurr used mostly reserves after the fifth inning and they were able to get a run off of Devlin Gobiel in the sixth.  Nick Correnti’s high hopper drove in Kevin Terban with G’town’s ninth run.

Coach Spurr let Mark Berkland pitch the seventh inning and he gave up five straight singles before getting an out.  Noah Kligerman, Adam Ivanic, and Devlin Gobiel drove in the three Amesbury runs in that final inning as the Indians batted around.

Amesbury has now lost ten of their last eleven games.  Their next game is home on Tuesday against Newburyport.

Georgetown travels to North Shore Tech on Monday.

Pitcher Devlin Gobiel fields a high hopper in the sixth.

Every park is a little different.  At Georgetown they provide a program and they also announce the names of the players batting and any substitutions made.

The Georgetown right fielder disappeared into the lush vegetation in foul territory and came out with the ball.

In the section I was sitting in there was news that Tyler Wade had been voted King of the Prom.

All nine starters for Georgetown reached base in some fashion.

Both Colby Ingraham and Ryan Browner were picked off first base.

CJ Ingraham had a 2-run single in the decisive third inning.

(All of the pictures above and below enlarge significantly if you click on them.)

slide into third

Ryan Browner

Allen Navarro slides into second

Troy Eaton

Mark Berkland

Catcher Mac Short chases a foul popup

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North Reading wins 9th straight routing Amesbury 14-1 in Cape Ann League softball

Sophie Warren tries for third

Tarah Reilly – four hits and five RBI

(Amesbury)  I have seen ten of the twelve softball teams in the Cape Ann League (missed Pentucket and Georgetown) this season and in my opinion there is none better than the senior-less North Reading Hornets.

The Hornets mugged a good Amesbury team, 14-1, on a beautiful Friday afternoon.

Amesbury (13-4) played the Hornets (15-2) a month ago and lost a close one (2-0) at North Reading.  There was no similarity between that game and the one I saw this afternoon at Amesbury.

NR was ahead 8-1 after 2 ½ innings and never in trouble thereafter.

Amesbury starter Carolina Merrill limited North Reading to three hits a month ago but this time around everyone in the Hornet lineup had at least one hit.  NR totaled sixteen hits.

Tarah Reilly whacked a bases-loaded triple in the third and Terri Ferrazzani did the same thing in the seventh.

Tarah had four hits for the Hornets batting second and drove in five runs.  The NR sophomore did a good job in the first inning of dirtying up her uniform as she tripped rounding third and ended up diving back into third.

Amesbury’s only run was in the second.  Alexis Boswell singled in the infield and reached third on a wild pitch and a fielder’s choice.  Rachel Cyr singled Alexis home from there.

Terri Ferrazzani – scattered seven hits and had a 3-run triple

But that was it for the Indians even though they ended up with seven hits off NR pitcher Terri Ferrazzani and left runners in every inning.  Amesbury, however, never had more than one hit in an inning except the second when they scored their run.

The Indians hurt themselves in the field in a couple of innings.  A bobble by second baseman Alexis Boswell in the second opened that inning.  Later with runners on first (Shelby Carney) and third (Leslie Zewiey), NR sent Shelby into a rundown.  Leslie was able to score while the rundown was underway and then Amesbury threw the ball away during the rundown and Shelby ended up on third. Shelby would later cross home with NR’s third run of the inning on Tarah Reilly’s single.

There were two drops by first baseman Sarah McCullough in the sixth that gave the Hornets an unearned run.

NR had three triples in the game.

North Reading has won nine straight.  They have Manchester-Essex away on Monday and finish with Lynnfield and Tewksbury.

The Hornets are undefeated (13-0) in the Cape Ann League.  AHS coach Chris Perry’s recollection was that the last undefeated CAL softball team was his in 2006.

Tewksbury defeated NR early in the season.  Masco was the other team to have a win over North Reading.  Two weeks later Masco and NR met again and the Hornets won, 17-2!

Not only did everyone in the North Reading lineup have hits but all of them scored at least one run.  Remarkable display of top-to-bottom hitting.

North Reading arrived a half hour late minus Coach Rusty Russell.  Rusty was singing at a funeral so assistant coach Nicole Zimmerman ran the team.

Autumn Kligerman – 2 hits for Amesbury

Alexis Boswell and Autumn Kligerman had two hits apiece for the Indians.  Autumn was sick and unable to play until the third inning.

Catcher Cassie Schultz made a diving catch of a popup down the first base line in the fifth.

Amesbury faces Georgetown at home on Monday.

The regular season is over for both teams next week.  Both teams will play in the post-season.  NR went on in the Division 2 North semi-finals last year.  I would not be surprised to see them do better than that this time around.

(All of the pictures above and below enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Merri Moise heads for home

Tarah Reilly down rounding third

Shortstop Amanda Schell makes a running catch of a foul pop.

Meghan Riley rounds third as throw comes in from Erin Leary

Catcher Cassie Schultz makes a diving catch

Alexis Boswell lunges for a line drive

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Mel Mancinelli leads Lynnfield past Amesbury 4-0 in Cape Ann League softball

The Lynnfield team congratulates pitcher Mel Mancinelli (#10) after defeating Amesbury

Mel Mancinelli – shut out Amesbury with three hits

(Amesbury)  Lynnfield’s Mel Mancinelli tossed a 3-hit shutout as the Pioneers defeated Amesbury, 4-0, on a cloudy Monday afternoon in Cape Ann League softball.

Mel was the big story as she only allowed four base runners the entire game.  The CAL All-Leaguer issued just one walk and during one stretch retired fourteen batters in a row.  She had seven strikeouts.

Amesbury (11-3) threatened in the first (Cassie Schultz triple) and second (runners on second and third with two out) but couldn’t do any damage.

Lynnfield (10-5) had eight hits and base runners in every inning except the fifth.  However, it took Amesbury errors to put the finishing touches on all four of the Pioneers’ runs.

This innocent looking play turned into two unearned runs for Lynnfield in the second inning.

In the second, Jade Palladino and Mandy McQueen reached third and second with two outs.  A routine grounder to second baseman Alexis Boswell looked to be the inning ender but first baseman Sarah McCullough couldn’t handle the throw and both runners scored.

In the third, Lynnfield put runners on first (courtesy runner Julia Eliopoulos) and third (Katie Rowe) with one out.  Mel Mancinelli followed with a sacrifice bunt attempt that Sarah McCullough threw past first allowing Katie Rowe to score.  Later in the inning, Mandy McQueen’s fielder’s choice enabled Julia Eliopoulos to cross with the fourth Pioneer run.

Those four runs were more than enough on this afternoon.

Carolina Merrill

Carolina Merrill went the first five for Amesbury and gets a tough loss thanks to four unearned runs.

Cassie Schultz, Erin Leary, and Autumn Kligerman had the Indians three hits.

Katie Rowe paced Lynnfield with three hits.  Jade Palladino had two hits.

Amesbury defeated Lynnfield, 5-2, in a nonleague game at Lynnfield on April 13th.

Amesbury has now lost two straight after winning seven straight.

Lynnfield coach Peter Marinelli

With the tenth win, Lynnfield qualifies for the end-of-the-season state tournament.  Coach Peter Marinelli told me that he nearly had that 10th win last game against Rockport.  He also told me that Rockport coach Diane Parisi played for him when he coached Stoneham.

Next game (weather permitting) for Lynnfield is at Manchester-Essex tomorrow afternoon.  Amesbury is at Triton on Wednesday.

When I see corner infielders not wearing face masks I ask myself the following questions: (1) Why do the players still make the final decision and (2) How serious an injury will it take before masks are required?

(The pictures above and below enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Kelsey LeBlanc takes a throw beating Janine Fatal to first.

Sam Shopleigh makes a catch in right

Jade Palladino catches a popup.

Cassie Schultz

Amanda Schell flips to Alexis Boswell

Mandy McQueen makes a running catch

Amesbury coach Chris Perry

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Newburyport gets walkoff win 3-2 over North Andover in Cape Ann League softball

Lea Tomasz scores the game-winner in the 8th inning as Beth Castantini watches

(Newburyport)  The Newburyport Clippers (8-6) scored an unearned run in the bottom of the eighth to walk off to a 3-2 win over North Andover (4-8) on Friday afternoon in Cape Ann League softball action.

Runs were hard to come by in this one although NA had two quick ones in the first. The Clippers had a run in the first and another in the 4th.

There were plenty of base runners, thanks to seventeen hits and six walks, but both pitchers (Beth Castantini and Kim Crucioli) successfully pitched out of jams most of the afternoon.

Carley Siemasko hustles down the first base line in the 8th inning.

In the game-ending inning, Lea Tomasz led off with a single up the middle.  Molly Rowe’s infield grounder got Lea to second.  Carley Siemasko then hit a full-swing dribbler to pitcher Kim Crucioli’s left.  Carley hustled down the line and the play was going to be close at first.  However, Kim’s throw was high and went off the top of first baseman Haley Kosheff’s glove into right field allowing Lea Tomasz to come across with the winning run.

The way North Andover started the game you never would have expected such an outcome.  Their first two batters (Sara McCarthy and Courtney Green) doubled and the Knights quickly had a run.  Two batters later, Gwen Vozeolas blooped a two-strike single down the right field line and NA had a second run.

Sara McCarthy touches home with the first Knight run.

But thereafter the Knights would only threaten and fall short.  They left runners on in every inning but the second.  They had a runner (Sara McCarthy) on third with one out in the seventh and runners on second (Haley Kosheff) and third (Jaclyn Decologero) with two outs in the eighth.  Newburyport pitcher Beth Castantini induced infield grounders to escape both threats.

Newburyport picked up their first run in the first inning.  Kendra Dow walked, stole second on a close play, and came home on Lea Tomasz’s double to right center.

The Clippers tied the game in the fourth.  Molly Rowe hit a bloop down the right field line that Jess Bramanti couldn’t quite reach.  Molly ended up on third on the play and Carley Siemasko’s single to right brought in Molly with the tying run.

Newburyport nearly won the game in the bottom of the seventh.  Jackie Krusemark was on first after a walk with two outs.  Maddie Stanton ripped a line drive to left that leftfielder Gwen Vozeolas was able to stop at the last second.  If that ball had gotten past Gwen I am quite certain that Jackie would have scored to end the game.

Maddie Stanton

Maddie Stanton made two big plays in the fourth.  First the third baseman dove to snag a bunt attempt.  Later she dove for third to get a force out.

NA starter Kim Crucioli feasted on the bottom third of the Clipper lineup getting all seven of her strikeouts there.

Winning pitcher Beth Castantini K’d five Knights.

CAL All-Leaguer Sara McCarthy paced NA with two hits.

Junior Lea Tomasz, senior Molly Rowe, and freshman Carley Siemasko each had two hits for the Clippers.

North Andover faces their neighborhood rival, Andover, tomorrow at home at 10AM.

Newburyport’s next game will be at Georgetown on Monday afternoon.

The weather started out cloudy (Will it rain?) and changed to warm (Why did I bring this jacket?).

Newburyport boxscore

North Andover boxscore

(The pictures above and below enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Kim Crucioli

Lea Tomasz singles in the 8th

Courtney Green scores second NA run

Gwen Vozeolas

Jess Bramanti lunges for Molly Rowe fly ball in the 4th

Angela Logomasini snow cone

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Newburyport upsets Rockport 3-2 in Cape Ann League softball

Catcher Lauren Singer handles the throw as Kayla Parisi approaches

Lauren turns to tag Kayla

Lauren tags Kayla

Winning pitcher Beth Castantini fields a bunt by Amanda Chalmers

(Newburyport)  The Newburyport Clippers (6-5) may have turned their season around with this one.

The Clippers beat a very good Rockport team, 3-2, at Cashman Park on Monday afternoon in Cape Ann League play.

(I did not arrive in time to fill out a scorebook but I did have my camera and will provide some commentary as well.)

Rockport (9-2) has already won Division 3 of the Cape Ann League but they have now lost two of their last three.

Newburyport, on the other hand,  has been a disappointment.  Last year the 17-5 Clippers found ways to win.  This year the reverse has happened more times than expected.

Mollie Rowe takes a throw to get Haley Lorden at first in the seventh.

That’s why the win over Rockport may be the signal of better days ahead.  Here was a game in which pitching, hitting, and defense all clicked when needed and a game they could have been lost by Newburyport was won.

Winning pitcher Beth Castantini was several times within a pitch of walking in a run but it never happened.

The Clipper hitters put hits together early to grab a two-run lead and later came up with the game winner after Rockport had rallied to tie the score.

The Newburyport defense was also strong.  There was a dropped popup but the team was mistake-free otherwise.  Kendra Dow made several long/strong throws from short.

The most important Clipper play in the game was turned in by leftfielder Catherine Casellini.  In one of the early innings, catcher Lauren Singer tried to nail a runner getting back to third. Her throw sailed over third baseman Maddie Stanton’s head……but there stood Catherine, where she was supposed to be, backing the play up.  Catherine caught the errant throw and the run was saved.

And against a good team like Rockport, all those things had to be in place or the result would have been different.

Rockport’s Kristin Turner pitched well enough to win and the defense behind her, especially shortstop Gabby Muniz, was very good.  However, with base runners all over the place Rockport never turned the makings of big innings into realities with a clutch hit or two.

And if you’re looking for just one reason for the Viking loss, pin it on base running.  They made three outs on the base paths.  One runner was picked off third, another was out by plenty at the plate, and the final out of the game was a failed attempt at stealing second.

Rockport pitcher Kristin Turner talks with Coach Diane Parisi after getting hit by a line drive.

A scary moment happened in the sixth inning when a sharp Lea Tomasz liner grazed off the top of the head of Rockport pitcher Kristin Turner.  She and the rest of us were thankful that she was wearing a face shield.

The weather was downright pleasant at Cashman Park.  What happened to the wind, mist, and temps in the 40s?

I learned at the game that Kristin Turner learned to pitch from her older sister who pitched for Beverly.  The older sister now attends Salem State.

I thought that there might be some sort of on-site newspaper coverage of the game.  However, when I checked the CAL schedule afterwards for today, I noticed that 10-1 Masco was playing 10-1 Amesbury at Amesbury today.  I suspect that the details of that game will be extensively covered.

Rockport will host Amesbury on Wednesday, weather permitting.  On the same projected rainy day, Newburyport is scheduled to visit Pentucket.

(The pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Shortstop Gabby Muniz

Rockport catcher Mollie Watson catches a foul pop.

Kendra Adams scores a Rockport run

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Tyler Leavitt silences Triton 7-1 with a 12K, 5-hitter for North Andover in Cape Ann League baseball

Tyler Leavitt gets congratulated by catcher Brandon Walsh after striking out his 12th Viking to end the game.

Tyler Leavitt – undefeated (13-0) in his varsity career

(Byfield) It looked after four innings as if Triton might be able to do something no one else had been able to do in three seasons……defeat North Andover pitcher Tyler Leavitt.

However, the upset notion went down the drain in the fifth inning as the Knights (8-3) put up five runs and went on to defeat the Vikings, 7-1, on a surprisingly pleasant Sunday afternoon at Triton in Cape Ann League action.

Triton (3-7) scored a run in the first and threatened in the second but were limited to three base runners over the final five frames.

Tyler Leavitt escaped the jam (runners on second and third with one out) in the second with a strikeout and an infield grounder.

Tyler (12 K’s) had strikeouts in every inning including the last five batters he faced.  The senior lefty will be pitching for Southern Maine next season.

I learned at the game that Tyler was 6-0 as a freshman on the junior varsity, 4-0 as a sophomore, 6-0 as a junior, and now 3-0 as a senior.

Triton starter Nick Cornoni got out of a base-loaded situation in the second and held a tenuous 1-0 lead into the fifth.

Costly Rich Fecteau bobble in the fifth

In the fifth, Dan Rivet singled in NA’s first run and an infield error (Rich Fecteau) allowed Mike Borzi to cross with the second one.  Brandon Walsh delivered two more (Dan Rivet and Rick O’Connor) with a double down the leftfield line.  Brandon crossed with the Knight’s fifth run of the inning on Dan Laorenza’s single to right.

Those five were more than enough the way Tyler Leavitt was pitching.

The Knights collected solo runs in the sixth and seventh.  Tyler Whitley homered over the leftfield fence off reliever Jack Germinara in the 6th.  Brandon Walsh doubled in the 7th, stole third, and came home on Tyler Leavitt’s sacrifice fly.

The Triton run was scored by Rich Fecteau on a sacrifice fly by Mike Fish in the first inning.

Tyler Whitley in home run trot after clearing the left field fence in the sixth.

Brandon Walsh and Dan Rivet each had two hits in NA’s 10-hit attack.

Dmitri Hunt had two of Triton’s five hits.

The Knights Dan Laorenza appeared to injure his hand sliding into second in the fifth inning on an attempted steal.

I was prepared for “typical” Triton weather and was pleasantly surprised.

Triton is halfway through the 4-games-in-4-days part of their schedule.  They face Masco at home on Monday.

North Andover travels to Ipswich on Tuesday afternoon.

(All of the pictures above and below enlarge significantly if you click on them.)

Rick OConnor heads for home in the fifth

Rich Fecteau

Triton coach Rich Dube

Nick Cornoni

Brandon Walsh ruled safe at third despite visual evidence that might suggest otherwise.

Blais Whitman eyes a popup

Brandon Walsh

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